By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Some Philadelphia first graders had a famous face reading to them today, to celebrate Dr. Seuss’s birthday.

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“Do you like pterodactyls? I like pterodactyls as well.  I’m a big brontosaurus guy myself!” actor Tony Danza told the first graders at Fox Chase Elementary School.

Today, to mark “Read Across America Day” — a day honoring the birthday of Dr. Seuss, Danza (standing at left in photo) read not Dr. Seuss but The Dinosaur Zoo, by Claude Belanger and Ralph Whirly.

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He tap-danced between pages and told children how important it was to read.

“We have to try to convince the kids that it is in their interest to try to take advantage of this time that they’re in school,” Danza said afterward.  “It’s this much of their lives, and it will inform the whole rest of their lives.”

Danza  — who taught for one year at Northeast High for a 2009 reality television show — upstaged Pennsylvania state representative Kevin Boyle (seated at left in photo), who also read to the Fox Chase kids.

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